Sibling rivalry ignites when Lightning meets Magpies
NETBALL: They've grown up together and played alongside one another but Kelsey Browne and Madi Robinson will put their sisterly bond aside for a Super Netball blockbuster in Brisbane on Saturday night.
For Sunshine Coast Lightning wing attack Browne, it's been a "strange” build-up to the national league round-five clash against the all-star Collingwood Magpies and her highly-accomplished sibling.
"We usually chat a couple of times a week,” she said on Wednesday.
'We like to keep in touch, whether it's over the phone or texting but...this week has been very different. When I did text her she was like 'see you on the weekend'. It was kind of like business from there.”
And when they do take to the court, expect a battle.
"As soon as we cross the line there's probably not going to be much mercy,” Browne said.
"Hopefully both of us do well...but I hope Lightning wins.”
The two have already been plotting against each other.
"We (Lightning) do (pre-game) analysis, and I know Collingwood would be doing the same thing.”
"She would have a lot of dirt on me - what my strengths and weaknesses are - but I also feel like I've got the same sort of feedback I can give to my team about her.
"If it comes down to things that might annoy her on the court, that's where I'll come into play.”
Browne has also learned plenty from her sister during the years, including at Melbourne Vixens where they played together.
Robinson, 29, is an established Australian representative, two-time international player of the year and premiership-winning star who was adjudged the most valuable player in last year's trans-Tasman competition.
"I have been able to pick up a lot of things from what she has done and not just through advice but from watching her movement patterns and seeing what she does in different scenarios has definitely helped me improve my game,” she said.
Browne, 25, made her debut two years ago, replacing her injured sister, and has played just 15 games in the national league.
But she appears to have taken her game to another level this season, including an MVP showing against the Adelaide Thunderbirds a fortnight ago.
"This year it's about taking that next step,” she said.
"I feel like I'm thriving under Noels (coach Noeline Taurua) and with the other girls in the team.”
Second of eight teams, the Lightning takes on its fifth-placed rival at 7.45pm.